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Friday, 12 August 2011



Apples originated in the Middle East more than 4,000 years ago. These early apples were pale green, red or yellow and consist principally of the core.

Despite popular belief, there is no mention in the King James Bible that the fruit Eve gave Adam from the Tree of Knowledge was an apple. The first mention of apples in the Bible is not in Genesis but in the Book of Deuteronomy.

Ancient Greeks declared their love for a woman by throwing an apple at her.

The ancient Romans considered apples a luxury fruit, superior to figs.

An early relative of the crab apple is thought to have been brought to England during the Norman conquest.

According to legend, the Swiss folk hero William Tell shot the apple off his son’s head on November 18, 1307.

 Depiction of the apple-shot scene in Sebastian M√ľnster's Cosmographia 1554 edition

Lovers in Elizabethan times would exchange 'love apples ‘when plighting their troth. Peeled apples were kept under respective armpits until saturated with sweat and then inhaled by male and female as a reminder of their love.

The English writer Robert Greene is in his 1590 book Arcadia made the first written mention of an apple pie: "Thy breath is like the steame of apple-pyes."

Apples were the first known Christmas tree decoration.

The apple that fell from a tree and inspired Isaac Newton’s theory of gravity in 1687 is thought to have been the “Flower of Kent” variety. That same apple tree is still growing at his family home over 350 years later.

The English colonists arriving in North America found only one type of apple, the crab apple, which they called “winter banana” or “melt-in-the-mouth. These are the only native apples to the United States.

Early North American settlers brought with them European apple seeds and attempted to grow them but the early orchards produced very few apples because there were no honeybees to pollinate them.

Britain’s first Prime Minister Robert Walpole often sat munching Norfolk apples in the House of Commons.

By the middle of the eighteenth century, Apple Pie, formerly called house pie by the poor, had become so popular a dessert in America that Yale College are serving them every night at supper

John “Johnny Appleseed” Chapman, a frontier missionary, having earlier started collecting apple seeds from cider presses in western Pennsylvania embarked on a long trek westward, walking barefoot, planting a series of apple nurseries from Pennsylvania to central Ohio and beyond. He started selling away thousands of seedlings to pioneers, resulting in many acres of productive apple orchards in the early 19th century.

The Bramley apple is a cooking apple named after Matthew Bramley, a butcher in Southwell, Northamptonshire, England, who first grew it in his garden in the mid-19C. It grew from a seedling planted by a young girl called Mary Ann Brailsford in her Southwell garden in 1809. The house and garden were bought in 1846 by Bramley and ten years later he allowed Henry Merryweather to take a cutting from the tree, as long as the apples grown from it were called ‘Bramleys’.

The first recorded sale of a Bramley was on October 31, 1862 when Merryweather’s accounts include “three Bramley apples for two shillings.”

'Bramley's Seedling' apples from Nottinghamshire, England By Marcin Floryan

The original tree grown from Mary Ann’s seedling still bears fruit.

Maria Ann Smith, a gardener who immigrated to Australia from England developed a new apple. An all-purpose apple with green skin, firm, crisp flesh, and a tart flavour, they were named Granny Smith apples after her. By the late 1860s she was selling them with great success on the Sydney markets.

The phrase "An apple a day keeps the doctor away" is found in a Pembrokeshire proverb of 1866: "Eat an apple on going to bed ... keep the doctor from earning his bread."

Reality television personality Arthur Green from dating show The Bachelor NZ achieved the World Record for the Loudest Crunch of an Apple, after a huge 79.1 dB(C) bite. His record crunch was made on February 29, 2016 in Auckland, New Zealand.


There are more than 7,500 different varieties of apple.  if you ate a new one every day, it would take you more than 20 years to try them all.

Around 55 million tonnes of apples are grown worldwide each year with a value of about £10 billion. In Britain around 150,000 tonnes are produced each year, worth around £115 million.

China is the world's biggest grower of apples, producing more than 40% of the world's total harvest, or some 27.5 million tons.

An apple tree can produce up to 400 apples a year.

The Danes eat more fresh apples per head of population than any other nation.

The Cox is Britain’s favourite variety of apple, followed by the Bramley.

The “Delicious” variety of apples were originally known as “Hawkeyes.”

Golden Delicious apples have almost three times as many genes as people.

Fuji apples did originate in Japan, but have nothing to do with Mt. Fuji.

Fresh apples float because 25 per cent of their volume is water.

The apple is a member of the rose family, which also includes pears, plums, peaches and raspberries.

Fresh apples float because 25 percent of their volume is air.

Apples are more efficient than caffeine in keeping people awake in the morning.

An apple or pear has 17 chromosomes; a peach, raspberry or strawberry has between seven and nine.

It takes about 36 apples to make one gallon of apple cider.

The apples you buy in the store are 5-12 months old. They are stored in a special low temperature, low oxygen (2%) environment, which preserves the nutritional content of the fruit.

Because of the way a rotting apple releases ethylene (which accelerates rotting), one bad apple really does ruin the whole bunch.

Apple seeds are poisonous!

Apples, not caffeine, are more efficient at waking you up in the morning. The natural sugar in an apple is more potent than the caffeine in coffee.

Source Food For Thought: Extraordinary Little Chronicles Of The World by Ed Pearce

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